FCC to Let AT&T Pull Merger Application

The Federal Communications Commission granted AT&T Inc's request to withdraw its application for approval of its purchase of T-Mobile USA, an FCC official said on Tuesday.

AT&T and T-Mobile USA owner Deutsche Telekom AG said last week they wanted to withdraw their application with the FCC to focus on defending their $39 billion deal from a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Justice Department.

The FCC said the companies were free to come back to the commission with a new application.

The deal announced in March has been opposed by the Justice Department and FCC due to concerns about competition and job losses.

The FCC official said an FCC staff report would be released later on Tuesday showing that the touted benefits of the transaction do not outweigh the competitive disadvantages.